Holiday Baking 2012

Hi, everyone!

I think you already gathered from my relentless excitement, my mom and I had our annual holiday baking weekend.  It was….as predicted, as always…..wonderful.

the baking stage

The baking stage.

cranberry white chocolate scones

Dried cranberry and white chocolate scones.

glazing pumpkin scones

Glazing pumpkin scones.

pumpkin scones in a tin

Now, packed away in a tin.

key lime bars baking

Key lime bars baking.

baked key lime bars

Finito! Sprinkled with powdered sugar and beautiful.

cutting key lime bars

key lime bars in a tin

Now, the two-stepped Swedish Rusks.  Like mini biscotti and pretty much the best thing in the world.  (Besides everything else we’re making.  😉 )

Watkins almond extract

Watkins almond extract – like pure gold.

The Rusk “logs” have gone through their first 30 minutes of baking, then will be sliced up biscotti-style.

Swedish Rusk logs

Rusk logs 2

Rusk slices 1

They are baked for another 30 minutes at 200 degrees.  Dunk these in your coffee, people!

Rusk logs 2

Moving along to….snowballs!

Chocolate chips melting with evaporated milk

Chocolate chips melting with evaporated milk.

chopped walnuts added

Chopped walnuts added to the velvety chocolate.

The walnuts are mixed in, then chilled for an hour or two to harden.

The walnuts are mixed in, then chilled for an hour or two to harden.


Later – the chocolate mixture is rolled into balls and dipped into shredded coconut. Snowball!

We made about 547 almond cookies.

almond cookies margarine

Start with eight (8!) sticks of margarine. We doubled the recipe.

vanilla extract - almond cookies

Odd that we add vanilla extract to almond cookies? Goodness, no! This is also liquid gold.

almond cookie batter

Almond cookie batter

almond cookies in the oven

Round 1 of almond cookies in the oven.

And….I didn’t take pictures of the 547 finished cookies.  😦  But they were rolled in powdered sugar and are positively scrumptious.

We’ve learned a thing or two about these cookies.  Not only do we love them so much that we make dozens, but because they bake at such a low temperature for such a long time (45 minutes to an hour), we hold them for the last of the baked goods.

icing on thumbprint cookies

Thumbprint cookies were modified this year to be more round and less indented. Here, drizzling with red icing.

red and green thumbprint cookies

beautiful Christmas tree

My mom and dad’s beautiful Christmas tree.

Bailey bundled up

To round out the night, we took Bailey-greyhound out for a walk. She looks so embarrassed bundled up in her coat and booties!

two tired bakers

Two ready-for-sleep, but happy, bakers!

Saturday morning – we continue to humiliate poor Bailey with reindeer antlers.

Bailey, reindeer antlers

Ruuuuudolph! Rudolpha?

pumpkin bread loaves 1

We baked the pumpkin bread that didn’t quite fit in Friday.

pumpkin bread loaves 2

We also made a second double batch of Rusks.  You just can’t have too many!

At the last minute, we whipped up 50+ chocolate cupcakes for my mom to bring to the children’s group at their church Wednesday.

Mom and me, cupcakes

In light of Friday’s tragedy, I echo the sentiments of so many – sadness, heartbreak, disgust, disbelief, anger, and generally a resonating sick feeling in my stomach.  It feels like gluttony to have spent Friday and Saturday enjoying a cherished tradition with my mom and catching up on life with my dad.  To further that, coming back home last night to David, Sam, Henry, and the four-leggeds.  In the wake of such senselessness, I am overwhelmed with love for my family and absolute gratitude to have them in my life.

So, anyway.  I feel very, very lucky.

Goodnight, and peace to those who are hurting in Connecticut now and in the many days to come.


2 Comments on “Holiday Baking 2012”

  1. […] you guys!) and tomorrow….baking boatloads of Christmas treats with my mum (it’s our annual holiday baking weekend, yippee!).  The best laid plans, I tell […]

  2. […] weekend was just lovely.  I look forward to holiday baking with my mom every year….the memories are of the baking itself, of course, but go well beyond […]

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